And once again, we’re back on the flying boat. Ilya, Softie, and the ninety-eight other disciples were standing before me on the deck. All the disciples were looking at me with awe in their eyes! And some terror. Well, everyone knows awe is mostly composed of fear, so it can’t be helped that they’re a little scared of me too. “Alright! I bet you’re all wondering why I gathered you.” I didn’t tell them why; I just ordered them all up here. Surprises are fun!
None of the disciples said anything. They all were looking at me, but it felt like part of their gazes were directed towards Softie. Too bad for them, I already told Softie not to ruin the surprise. And Ilya likes watching people as they wait in dread, so there’s no chance she’d ruin it either. Wait a minute…. Why are the disciples waiting in dread!? This is supposed to be a fun surprise! I’m giving them swords, not killing their pets! “Stop looking so glum, damnit! You’re ruining my good mood.” I pointed at the terrified woman standing next to Softie. “You there, laugh!”
…The f*** kind of laugh was that? Alright. My good mood is officially ruined. I knew everything was going too well: My perfect plan to attract attention worked. My perfect plan to pose as the Bloody Bull Sect leader worked. My perfect plan to take everything in the armory worked. My perfect plan to steal the crown prince’s sword is going to work. But the people around me can’t see that. Look at how terrified they are of going to the Gates of Hell! Ah, the woes of being a genius with no peer; no one can understand me. Except Ilya.
“Why did you call us, Chosen Lucia?”
Ah! One person was brave enough to speak up! He’s the fellow that normally drives the boat, yes? I think he is. Wait, if he’s standing there now, then who’s driving!? Oh, there’s an auto-pilot mode for flying in straight lines. I almost made a fool of myself. “Here, catch.”
A sword flew through the air, and its pommel perfectly hit the brave disciple’s forehead. He fell over with a thud, unconscious. …I have a feeling that these people stand no chance in a real war. Didn’t they rack up a lot of experience while pillaging Kong County? These were the strongest hundred determined by a tournament that Softie’s grandpa insisted on holding! I only threw the sword lightly. The woman standing next to the unconscious driver shook him awake. “Where am I?” he asked in a groggy voice. He grabbed the sword that was lying on his chest. “What’s this?”
“It’s an earth-realm-ranked sword! It’s yours now.”
The driver’s mouth fell open as the murkiness in his eyes instantly cleared. “An e-earth-realm-ranked sword? F-for me!?”
The driver scrambled onto his knees and knocked his forehead against the floorboards nine times in quick succession. “Thank you, Chosen Lucia! I swear to follow you for the rest of my life! Even if you ask me to swim through a sea of flames or climb a mountain of swords naked, I will do it without hesitation!”
Whoa. Isn’t that a bit of an overreaction? His forehead’s bleeding from his kowtowing. It was just a sword…. “Seriously?”
“I’m serious! Chosen Lucia can order me, Passionate Cloud, to do anything and I will comply without hesitation!”
He said it twice; he must be serious. Should I test it? “Alright. Then here’s my first order.” I pointed towards the side of the boat. “Jump off.” We’re over a hundred feet in the air! I wouldn’t get hurt from falling from this high, but these people are a lot more brittle than me. They had to fly down on their swords to prevent injuries back when we were invading other sects.
“For Chosen Lucia!” Passionate Cloud ran towards the side of the boat and leapt with his arms spread out to the side. He really did it! There was no hesitation either! Is an earth-realm-ranked sword really that valuable…?
“S-shouldn’t you catch him?” Softie asked.
Ah! I forgot!
“It’s too late,” Ilya said. “We’re only a hundred feet in the air. It’ll take him roughly three seconds to hit the ground, and Lucia was standing around in a daze for two seconds. And it took you one second to ask that question. The question you should’ve asked was, is he still alive? And the answer to that is, most likely because we’re flying over a body of water.”
Has Ilya fallen from a hundred feet in the air before? How does she know how long it takes? …It’s a mystery. Alright, I’ll teleport down there and save Passionate Cloud real … quick. Never mind. “Hey, Softie, go fly down there and bring him back.”
“Is something wrong?” Softie asked, but she took out her flying sword anyway.
“Uh-huh. I can’t do it, but you can. Hurry up and save him before he drowns.” I can’t swim. And he’s slowly sinking into a large body of water, so someone else has to save him. One day, I’ll conquer my fear of water. Maybe in like … never. Yeah. That sounds good. Water is an unnecessary force of evil in this world. Right. I should get rid of all the water instead of learning how to swim. That makes much more sense! Whew, I’m glad I have this necklace of intelligence.
While Softie went down to pick up Passionate Cloud, I distributed the rest of the earth-realm-ranked swords. I had enough for everyone and more! I bet Durandal would’ve liked me to save all of them for him to eat, but he’s an asshole who lied to me about being virile. This serves him right! Eh? I’m distributing these swords out of generosity, not out of pettiness! Sheesh. Do one good deed and everyone questions your integrity.
“Thank you for the sword, Lucia.” Softie smiled at me and hugged the sword that I gave her to her chest. “Our Shadow Devil Sect only has three earth-realm-ranked swords, but with these, we’ll definitely be the strongest sect in King Province.”
I thought the Shadow Devil Sect was really rich, but they only had three earth-realm-ranked swords? “How much is an earth-realm-ranked sword worth, just wondering?”
“Close to a hundred billion spirit stones,” Softie said.
“A hundred billion….” How much is that in thousands?
“You’d have to take the underwear of every person in ten thousand sects to buy a single sword,” Ilya said and paused, “assuming each person only had one set of unwashed underwear.”
Thanks, Ilya. Ten thousand is … four zeros? That’s…, f***! That’s a lot! That many people for one sword!? I-it’s not too late to take all these swords back, is it? But they all pledged their undying loyalty to me…. Alright, fine! I’ll be sure to get my hundred billion spirit stone’s worth of use out of each and every one of them!